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tv   Washington This Week  CSPAN  November 9, 2013 4:00pm-6:01pm EST

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administrator responsible for the exchange. her suggestion was that they go to the website. sure enough, they tried. because the white house said the problem -- was to meet people trying to sign up at once, marvin and kathy even set their alarm clock in the middle of the night. after a month of trying and it looksowhere and now like they will have to buy private insurance. they know it will probably cost more, but they would rather have that certainty and avoid federal penalties and more worried and sleepless nights. this is what the trail looks like. here you have hard-working people who are repeatedly told not to worry and that their coverage would sit insane and, if anything, the cost would go down. just the opposite is happening. adding insult to injury, the
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white house -- the president -- is not leveling with us. he's trying to claim -- cover his tracks, claiming he never really made these promises. no wonder a member of his own party called this a crisis of confidence. if the president is truly sorry about this, he will take steps to right this wrong. that is why i have offered to -- a bill to delay this law's individual mandate impacts. after all, how can you tax people for not buying a product from a website that does not work? in addition, next week the house will take up the keep your health care act, which will individual today in them market can continue to exist. no one wants to go to their inbox or mailbox and find out a plan they want is not going to continue.
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we look it asking questions and holding hearings because we will get to the bottom of this. the problem is not just the website. it's the whole law. let's stop this train wreck now and give the mayor and people the fairness and peace of mind that they deserve. thank you for listening. k's monday -- >> monday as president -- is veterans day. president obama and first lady will hold a ceremony. the president is excited to deliver in -- deliver remarks. watch for full coverage beginning at 11 a.m. eastern time on c-span. congress will not be in on monday in recognition of the veterans day holiday. but will return to work on tuesday. to aoke -- we spoke
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capitol hill reporter about what is ahead on the agenda. >> humberto sanchez is a staff writer for rollcall. tuesday fromack on the veterans day break. what is the status of their talks and the issue they are working on? to try to finde common ground on the goal of the talks. expect a lot of positioning on opening positions, on where the negotiations will begin. actuallyatty murray has a speech about what her goals are on the floor, and last tuesday is saying that she is looking for a budget deal for the short-term, basically. the sequester.k propose newg to
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taxes to do so. some republicans think that is just another way of reading taxes. holding confirmation hearings for two of the administration's nominees, jeh johnson for homeland security secretary, and nominee forrve chairman, janet yellen. what is this that is of those? >> senator harry reid deftly want to try to get those done as soon as possible. they are both coming up next week, and we could see some action on them soon after they come out of committee. has threatened to put a hold on janet yellen's nomination in order to get a has on the audit that he been pushing for a while. and jeh johnson, some republicans have raised concerns about his qualifications. >> on the house floor, members are excited to take up a bill involving changes to the federal
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health care law again. tell us some of the details of the legislation. >> the law authorizes insurance companies to continue to offer plans that would have been canceled under the new standards of obamacare. said thatasically has people could keep their plans if they liked them. of people have got notices that their plans have been canceled. the idea is to try to score some clinical points on that, but also a big debate going on in congress about -- some political points on that, but also a big on thosein congress relations. considering a few more judicial nominations. what else is going on in the senate? >> there will be a vote on adc d.c.it court judge -- a
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circuit court judge. she is likely not to get the supported -- the support that is needed. her publicans are arguing that the caseload for the court is not requisite for -- republicans are arguing that the caseload for the court is not requisite for the nominations. not getkely she will the 60 votes needed to overcome the filibuster. then senate will move on to legislation that is designed to after a fungalt meningitis outbreak last year due tolled 65 people medication that was contaminated. that aue with that is wants to senator introduce legislation that would prohibit getting federal contributions from
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your employer, which happens to be the federal government. senator harry reid has offered an opportunity to have the amendment on the condition that he does not offer it again this congress. but senator better does not think that is a good idea. talk totinue to democratic aides. >> humberto sanchez writes for rollcall. we thank you for your time today. >> thank you. >> both chambers of congress return on tuesday at 2 p.m. eastern. house will consider bills under suspension of the rules with votes after 6:30 p.m. in the senate, speeches until 4:30 p.m. eastern with the nomination of mina pillar to be circuit-- u.s. d.c. court judge. watch live coverage of the house on c-span, the senate on c-span two. >> after becoming first lady, mainly eisenhower ran a tight ship at the white house,
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conducting inspections and approving all of the menus for a record number of state visits. watch the program later today at 7 p.m. eastern on c-span. and live monday night, our series continues. >> mrs. kennedy is known as a stylish -- a style icon. she put a lot of thought into her wardrobe when she was representing the country, both at the white house and while traveling abroad. she would think about what colors would mean something to the country she's about to visit. for her visit to canada, she chose this red pr cardin -- pierre cardin suit as a gesture toward the make-believe. i really admire the thoughtfulness she put into her wardrobe and she knew the advantages of choosing a color or a style that would make her stand out in the crowd. >> first lady jacqueline
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kennedy, monday night, live at 9:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. on "washington journal" we talked about the politics and public policy of noble energy and the state of solar and wind energy. these are things that there is a set amount of them on the
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planet. renewable energy is one where if we can figure out how to harness them well are inexhaustible. that is, wind currents, solar energy, geothermal resources. , you know, as well different types of plant material that we can use was creating electrical power, or if we turn it into ethanol and other types of biofuel. >> which one of those sectors make up the largest renewable energy, and why is it? hyperpower., it is arizona, colorado, many other states have hydropower projects. biggest, -- hydropower projects. those are the biggest, we have not built new projects for some time. they leadt is wind, new capacity additions last
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year. you havet is solar, some projects coming online. rooftops,ig on photovoltaic cells are becoming more widely used. host: ben geman, this chart from how sources have climbed from 199220 12. as nick juliano said, wind making a breakout. solar looks very small. guest: it really is. you have sources were the level of growth might be significant, but the aggregate amount compared to more established technologies is pretty small. facing question policymakers and analysts is how much are the source is going to grow and how quickly. one of the things that renewable energy companies are angry about is that eia believes that if
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there is no policy changes at all, total renewable electricity will only grow to about 16% by 2040. thehad a letter written to head of that agency by renewable energy companies and advocates saying that is way too pessimistic. affect investment in our sector if people believe it is that limited. another thing about the eia forecast is that if we start to do more aggressive things to address climate change, that number climbs dramatically. the level of renewable energy in the coming decades. the big question confronting policymakers and lawmakers, the big political question, what types of policy and how hard a market showed do we want to give renewable energy sources? what types of tax incentives and subsidies should be there? host: that brings us to capitol hill. two bills were put into place,
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who was behind them and what do they say? introduced by senator ed markey of massachusetts. he just joined this year. he is one of the leading clean energy advocates on capitol hill. he cosponsored the climate change bill in 2009 with waxman, he has been planning he wanted this to be his first legislation in the senate. it says electric utilities have to provide 25% of their electricity from renewable solar, -- wind., geothermal, by 2020 five. electric utilities and natural gas have to meet efficiency targets within a period. the second was introduced by tom udall and mike udall. their first cousins, they had a similar bill, 25% by 2025 renewable energy requirement, i
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don't believe they had the efficiency with theirs. the raf -- ref is popular at the state level. ranging fromevels 15% to 25% over the next decade or decade and a half. it is popular among clean energy advocates and environmentalists, it does not have a lot of chance of gaining traction in this congress. republicans are in charge of the house, they're very resistant to any sort of mandate, that is what an ref is. about realng energies and legislation on capitol hill. (202) 585-dial in 3880. republicans, (202) 585-3881. independents and all others, (202) 585-3882. two reporters who cover this issue here to take your
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questions about legislation on the federal level and the state level when it comes to renewable energy. geman,enna and -- ben b if this legislation that was talking about does not have a chance of moving through congress, kennedy epa act alone -- kennedy epa act alone? -- can the epa act alone? guest: they can. they are starting to create carbon emission standards for the nation's existing power plants. .hey are taking a lot of input the weight that this section of the clean air act works, it says the feds create binding guidelines. it says to the states, create a plan to implement that. one lady states could implement this plan is to adopt a policy way the states could
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implement this plan is to adopt a policy. the idea is to lower emissions from existing power plants, that is difficult. you can build it into a new plan, it is tough to create and add on technology to an existing plan that lowers the carbon level. so a way from a states power next is to rent a portable power mix state's renewable levels. these standards could provide new avenues for renewable energy. host: the epa going around the country for listening sessions. they have one this morning at their epa headquarters in washington. it kicks off at 9:00 a.m. eastern time, go to c-span.org for coverage of that listening session. nick juliano, how are cold lants, thecoal p
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owners of these utilities reacting to the epa and raising standards and possibly a federal standard for renewable energy as well as what is happening on the state level? by company.ries some utilities have been fairly aggressive in their pursuit of for noble energy. -- renewable energy. others are resistant. it depends on what part of the country they are in. companies in the midwest and the south, areas that use a lot of coal electricity, are typically more resistant to forcing per noble energy. they have existing plants that they think serve them well, they want to keep those. out west in california, they have one of the most aggressive standards. they're more on board. the other issue utilities have to deal with in terms of incorporating renewable energy
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is the issues they confront when they have distributed generation, rooftop solar panels that a utility worker in a control room cannot see or control, but they are providing electricity for. that is an issue that the utility interest rate -- the utility industry is grappling with. guest: -- any standard there on the federal level on the books? guest: no. but there are tax credits for producing electricity from wind and solar and other forms of renewable electricity. you have other programs such as the energy department's loan guarantee program. morere not providing any financing, but they provided loan guarantees under the stimulus law. there is no federal mandate that sets utilities, for by this much -- provide solar or
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as much energy from solar or wind. there are programs that has become controversial, any new ones coming down is very cloudy. host: we can dig into the incentives more for wind, solar. ronald, michigan, republican caller. caller: good morning. my on -- am i on? ok, i am a farmer. towers destroyed hundreds of thousands of acres of land. you have got to have a road to get back to them -- to the windmills. what do you do when the wind does not blow? you have to have a backup generator. i am in michigan.
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renewables, every time that goes up, my bills go up. windmills are four times as much electricity as a power plant from coal or nuclear or any one of them. what do you do when the sun does not shine on a solar panel? you have to have a backup generator for all this stuff. we need some renewables, but it is pretty slow. host: are the wind farms close to where you are? 25 miles away. we just went through a whole batch of them, they don't look nice either. host: why? caller: look at them. i would rather see trees. host: what about the noise level? caller: i haven't been close enough to hear the noise. host: do you know how much they not really.:
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it is nice to have one if you have land next to it, you get about 10,000 hours a year -- $10,000 a year. host: how does that work? if you owned land next to a wind farm, the federal government gives people money. caller: no, the people that generate electricity. host: nick juliano? guest: the point about intermittency is what he is talking about when you say the wind doesn't blow all the time. the industry is very aware, it is one of the bigger problems. the issue -- he is right, you need that generation for winhen the sources are not there. onto is resource ongoing storage technology. there is a solar plant in arizona that just started operation a week or two ago that had a storage component. there are a few different ways
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to do this. you can have batteries on a small scale, you can do solar facilities, air experiment with molten salt. that can store heat and dispatch at a later date. he represents a perspective that is certainly out there in the industry. it is something the industry has to deal with as they go out. they have to work with landowners. he was talking about lease payments that people receive, that is the case. if you are a farmer or a rancher in iowa or south dakota or washington state or oregon or land,er that can lease or the figures he cites seem reasonable. www.c-span.org -- host: ben? good: the caller brings a
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perspective. some of the problems they wind industry is facing. if you look at the amount of has going up and up, that created growing pains. you have increasing level of wind turbines. some people think it looks cool, other people think it does not look so good. another issue that has created is -- the more wind energy we have, the more expensive the federal tax credit is. the bigger deficit you take. that is why the continuation of a tax credit has grown in controversy because of the amount of millions of dollars it will cost the federal government will grow as it continues, or it might not continue.
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in anchorage, alaska, good morning. caller: good morning. my question is about the keystone pipeline. i know a little bit about it. the question i have is why do they need more oil? texas, they have been sending their oil elsewhere. they have more than enough. why doesn't canada run their line over to british columbia and distribute overseeing -- overseas? why is there so much controversy and what are the politics behind it? host: i will throw this to ben geman. guest: we are seeing this huge boom, we will need imports for
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quite a while. canada is our biggest supporter. advocates would say this is a country that we have a great relationship with and you have these refineries that are equipped to run this really heavy oil, and right now they are getting a lot of it from venezuela and mexico. advocates of the pipeline would say if these refineries need that heavy oil, let's get it from our neighbors up north. opponents would make the case is now to stop creating the infrastructure that enables this. host: the canadian government lobbying washington in "the complete witht" this graphic, showing there are 2.4 billion barrels per day coming from canada.
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on twitter, jodi says back when oil prices were $20 a barrel -- but now with $100 a barrel, the renewables are competitive. i prove it every day. are they competitive? guest: it depends what renewables and what part of the country you are talking about. there is renewable electricity, renewable fuel. i am not familiar of the top of my head with the cost. competitiveatively and they have the issue of less energy content per gallon of fuel. it depends. there are places in the country where the industry says you can go and build a wind farm that would be competitive with a whole plant or a nuclear plant. tricky because the prices of natural gas are
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down historically over the last few years compared to where they ago.one decade or more they have been coming up in the recent last year or so, but still well below where they were historically, and that makes it difficult for renewable electricity especially. host: ok. matt is next. baltimore, maryland. democratic caller. caller: thank you for c-span. i have been in the business for 50 years. i am 85. we installed -- a friend of mine imed pete freeman and installed the first windfarms in israel 35 years ago, and the technology has frozen back with the technology that we had at that time. absolutely ludicrous.
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there are much better ways of using wind energy, and there is a complete disregard for the ability to use wave energy. denser than times air, so you need smaller installations. that is number one. i would appreciate comments on that. the second thing, the sequestration thing is a hoax. there has been no correlation increases in the atmosphere and temperatures. as a matter of fact, with isotherm and -- isothermal conditions, nothing has changed -- has changed much. the last thing, the solar aspects, using the current is not and solar panels
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too good because they are high maintenance and short-lived. unless we transfer the gallium one of the more sophisticated systems, we will system.ve an economic we will also have the case of storing and distribution. host: thank you for the call. ben geman, let's talk about the technology freeze. guest: i understanding of the way wind turbine technology has advancesis you do have in the amount of electricity you are able to create. in earlier generations, they look quite different. the caller brought up something that is an emerging technology, not even a rounding error, yet people see potential in it --
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getting energy from waves, tides and currents. there has been some pilot level deployment off of the coast of oregon and other places, and that is something the caller pointed out that people see as a growth area, but it is not a commercial source of electricity in the u.s. yet. i would respectfully disagree with him on the climate question. he is expressing a quite contrary in view on whether or -- contrarian view on whether the emissions is creating global warming. host: nick juliano, is it contrarian? a viewpoint not shared by many scientists or people that study the issue. a recent report with a topline finding that they are as confident of the link between
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co2 and climate change as scientists have been between smoking and cancer. is uncertainty involved in terms of how fast, what we should do about it, etc., but the basic link is fairly rocksolid. host: on the earlier conversation about tax --entives, this from twitter there is no way this economy will get better from all of us wasteful spending. the president sure does for a lot of sheep. on the tax credit, let's begin with wind, nick juliano. how does it work? wind: basically, to a developer, the owner of a wind megawatt every hour of get $33.produce, you
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a lot of these companies do not make enough on the back end for the ride off on their tax bill to be worthwhile, so they partner with investors, usually, large banks, the tax equity market. they find a bank or someone else to take the tax cut it, and give them money up front to take the project. extended through the end of this year and tweaked the eligibility requirements so that anything you start building before the end of this year qualifies. previously, you had to have your project finished. ant happens the on that is open question and it is a key focus of larger tax reform talks. groups on both sides are getting involved. coalitionors wind
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will send a letter today saying we need to jobs, and the economic development. it is bipartisan with the governor of texas, south dakota, iowa, colorado. host: on a federal level, who are the opponents? caller: the tea party, typically, does not like it, but it is -- guest: the tea party, typically, does not like it, but it is a top divided. prosperity is urging congress to let it end. a congressman from kansas is one of the latest -- leading from the house side. lamar alexander is a leading opponent in the senate. they say it does not support the industry, just give us more time, more years, it will be
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able to compete without subsidies. host: ben geman, how long has this tax subsidy been around and what is the cost to taxpayers question mark guest: i believe --taxpayers? guest: i believe it has been , andd since the mid-1990's i cannot member with the latest score was. to extended for 12 years would be in the 12 billion dollar range. guest: 12 billion. guest: 12 billion. it is not enormous, but it is in the billions and this credit has on several near-death experiences recently. it looked like it might collapse, then it hitched a ride on the wall street bailout package and it has come to the brink of expiring a few times.
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whether we will see this in the future, it is difficult to say. was pointing out, the politics are hardly democrat versus republican. if you look at areas where it has taken off, it is texas, iowa, kansas, places where you have strong republican representation. that said, the debate over energy has become more partisan, as debates over many other things have. that is something a lot of reporters and people in the industry are watching -- the future of this incentive. host: we will be talking about it coming up here on "washington journal" when we talk to the wind association about the tax credit. from twitter -- it takes money to make money. spending our investments with returns and growth. joe. massachusetts.
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republican caller. caller: hi, greta. thank you for c-span. numerous studies has shown whirlwind has been implemented on a large scale in texas, california, ireland, and australia, and emissions from power plants that get measured do not significantly go down, and the reason for this is the wind is unpredictable. you cannot tell when it is going to drop out, so you have to be running the fossil fuel power plants as backups and cycling down, andd compensating for the wind going up and down, uses just as much fuel and emissions as if you let the power plants run freely, the way they were designed to run. host: nick juliano? guest: i am not familiar with those particular studies, but it is an industry that has been
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fairly, but it is a small space in terms of overall energy generation. a few states like south dakota 20%, butget nationwide, it is in the 4%-5% range. whether or not it is predictable, yes and no. i have been to control facilities -- i visited the facility in portland, oregon, a big control room with screens on the wall with pieces of data about their projects. one is a meteorological projection. here is where we printed the wind is going to go, and it ramps up in the middle of the day, down at night -- or, vice versa, actually. they have a general idea of how you need to, sort of, account
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for these things and plan for when the grid is going to be operating, but absolutely, you need backup generation. geman, james parker on twitter wants to know -- can you estimate when renewable energy will stand on its own and not require tax credits to survive? .uest: it is a great question the energy department has a goal of getting solar, which is a little further behind wind power, i believe they want to try to help through research and deployment programs to get solar electricity down to market parity on a per kilowatt basis by the end of the decade. wind, and in many cases, is pretty darn close already, if i am not mistaken. the thing that has to be looked at in conjunction with that question is what is the cost of the fossil fuels, because as
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who are turned to take aggressive action against climate change would say right now, all companies do not have to pay for the impact of their emissions. there are two sides to the coin -- one is how quickly the cost of the renewable electricity will come down, and the other is what should be priced and should not be price when you're creating the cost of the other forms of electricity. host: and nick giuliani, you have the tax credits the oil and gas industry have -- has gotten. this chart
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guest: yes, this is one of the leading arguments that the renewable energy industry makes -- they say wind is mature, while we have only been around really for 10 years, 25, 30 years, if you go back to the earliest projects, whereas that oil industry has been around for a century and has had plenty of government support. in terms of what is a tax credit, subsidy, and a business expense, this is a debate you get into when you get into the weeds of this because the oil insisted they do not get subsidies, but standard practices that a variety of businesses have. you could have a variety of positions on both sides of that debate. , and whenck to wind it will be competitive, last year, the american wind main lobbyinghe
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trade group -- host: who will we -- who we will be talking to coming up. guest: who you will be talking to, put out a analysis that said we need the tax credit sometime allowed2019 and they how lucrative it would be and how it would decrease over that time, but in the context of tax reform, if everyone is going to lose the subsidy, which is the reform,ure form of tax they said in the context, they could face up the credit over the next six years or so and then they would have a minimally viable industry. geman,his chart, ben shows the allocation of energy- related tax preferences. fuels, 20%.
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renewable energy, 45%. out, thisnick pointed is an industry that has been ove, anda stronger sh advocates would argue they are competing against technologies that have more than a foothold in the market, that have been around for centuries of oil and coal. another thing that is important to look at is it is important to look at what are the subsidies, texas 7 -- incentives -- tax incentives, and then separate that out for producers. they are really not substitute for one another. oil is what we put in our engines, and renewable electricity sources are what put the lights on, but that said, there is an overlap at the margin as we have
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electrification of our vehicles, and there is a renewable energy alongsidet exists oil, which is ethanol and other sorts of biomass transportation fuels. talking to benre geman of "-- host: we are talking to ben geman of "the hill," and nick juliano. florida. thank you for your call. caller: good morning. if the federal government were willing to give homeowners a low interest loan to convert their homes to solar, let's say 2%, payable over 10 years, what people would save on their electric bill would pay that off. my power billion florida is $400 a month in the summer and about
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250 dollars. if i could run my home on solar, i would probably have an almost zero electric bill, which would probably pay for the loan, and this would also create a huge number of jobs in america because anyone that lives in an area where there is a lot of sun would do this in a heartbeat. we are sick of paying those. one other thing about the up, why that just came do we not build a pipeline -- a canaday at the border of and north dakota, which would create permanent jobs and we would not have to have the pipeline running through our country. host: we will leave it there. nick juliano, if you want to take her first point. sure. i think various localities have programs of that sort.
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i do not know of anything at the federal level, particular to residential solar, but in terms of saving energy through renewables or efficiency and using that to pay off over time, there are systems that federal agencies can use. they are called energy savings performance contracts. it is not exactly the same. it is focused more on efficiency. the idea is an agency partners with a service provider for new or a betterulation hvac system, or what have you, to lower the bill and pockets of savings. it exists in a variety of forms. host: ben geman, before we end this conversation, coming up on "washington journal," we will talk about solar power. the federal loan guarantee
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program is a program that encourages renewable energy, solar power. folks are familiar with it because of the name solyndra. how does the program work? guest: this became publicly known with the failure of the government-backed solar manufacturing company, solyndra, and what the loan guarantee program was designed to do with creating a 2005 energy law that was passed with bipartisan support and signed by then- idea was bush, and the to say there is a lot of technology out there that has a public and social benefit -- lower emissions, lower forms of different types of pollutants, including carbon -- but they are not as established in the marketplace. consequently, when companies are trying to get financed, it is tougher to go to wall street and get that money.
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a loan guarantee is basically a federal backstop, so you have the federal government saying look, we are basically on the hook for the lending for this project if the company is not able to get the financing itself. oftentimes, not only is it a guarantee of the loan, but the federal government is providing the loan itself. in thef project started obama administration, early, and it is interesting, well solyndra became the most controversial by far, there were other projects that hit headwinds or failed, but that was a manufacturing project. the power generation project has a better track record. many critics say perhaps the loans were not vetted well enough, but while we have had high-profile failures, it is a small part of the overall loan e u.s., husain
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haqqani, on pakistani-u.s. relations. >> "washington journal" continues. host: michael brune of the sierra club joins us. that began with the obama administration's record so far. how would you grade it? guest: pretty good, but incomplete. certainly, what the administration has done on health standards has been important in performing the -- improving the informants of our utilities and protecting our air improving the of our utilities and protecting our air and water. we also have to recognize the president's leadership in
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supporting efficiency standards for automobiles that will simultaneously save significant amounts of oil over the next couple of decades, and also reduce renounce gash -- gas emissions. the standards will raise fuel economy to 55.4 miles per gallon. by itself, that will cut greenhouse gas emissions in the u.s. by 10%. those are things we are excited about. is piece that is undecided whether or not the administration will adopt a supply-side strategy to their climate land. -- plan. right now you have an energy policy that is often undermining the president's climate goals. when you talk -- here the president talk about exporting, that sets us further back from where we need to be in terms of stabilizing greenhouse gas emissions, and it is undecided
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whether or not the president and the administration will show strong leadership on the. host: let me show you from the white house, the president's plan to address climate change and four key points -- has he succeeded on any of these fronts? you talked about café standards, but otherwise? yout: it depends how quantify success, taking a long- term view, what are we doing to build an economy that is 100% power with energy that is clean, renewable, safe, secure, and sustainable? you would say we are making
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great progress. we have secured the retirement of more than 150 old and out plants.irty coal fire energy use has declined as the economy has grown. cars and trucks are becoming more efficient. all of that is good. at the same time, when you look at the affect that we already see from a destabilizing climate, droughts, wildfires, severe storms, you know that we need to be doing everything we can to accelerate a transition to a clean energy future, and weeks -- when we set the standard that high, that is when the president does not always reach the right marks. the way the president has laid out his priorities from mitigation, both from power plants and mobile sources, cars and trucks, is sound. it is a comprehensive, strategic approach.
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but, in the face of persistent, unyielding opposition, both from most segments of the republican party, as well as the oil, coal, and gas industries, the president has not always reached -- the strongest long-term view, and sometimes steps back from what actually needs to be done. host: michael brune, let me show you what the president had to say last week, touting his strategy on energy. [video clip] of theave pursued in all above energy strategy, so we are producing more traditional energy, more noble energy than ever -- renewable energy than ever before, more natural gas come to we have cut our pollution in the process here at -- process. host: what do you mean -- what do you make of the all of the above policy?
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itst: we do not support because it means more of the same. this is where the administration is at war with itself, without the president has talked about how climate change is a moral obligation and an economic opportunity to transition to clean energy. at the same time, when the president talks about an energy policy that is all of the above, expanding oil drilling, expanding fracking, expanding exports of fossil fuels, that only undermines his first goal. the opportunity here is under the obama administration, the price of wind has dropped by almost 50%. the price of solar has dropped more than 75%. so, we have a chance right now, to leapfrog over fossil fuels. not right away, and not entirely, but when all of these
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coal plants are coming off line, we can have a majority of the energy mix -- a super majority of the energy mix, come from solar, wind, and in aggressive renewable energy. that is starting to happen at the utility level, but it is not being pushed as much as it needs to at the federal level. there are a lot of great examples. the omaha power district in nebraska recently made a big investment in wind, so by 2017, they will be at 30% of their power coming from wind. a warren buffett subsidiary, mid-american energy, was considering building a nuclear power plant, backed away from that, and made the largest economic investment of any kind in the state of iowa's history, and by 2017, mid-america and iowa will be powered 39% by wind. we see in oklahoma, texas,
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colorado, minnesota, all of the states, big investment in solar and wind hitting penetrations of 30% and 40% by the end of this decade. similar level a of ambition from this president, going all in on clean energy and pushing out as much oil, gas as we can. host: viewers are waiting to talk to michael brune. in northp first carolina. democratic caller. caller: good morning. in the mid-2000's, "the st. -- st.urg" time petersburg times" put on an article about use you in florida, and i travel on the highways, night and day. i would like to know if you are
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mixing to michael's and pumping the chemicals in the tanks and adding water to it to make our fuel. in the old days i saw nothing but all four corners with gasoline stations, and now there are fewer gasoline stations, more cars, and i cannot understand why these tankers are off of the road. can you answer that question for me, and thank you, c-span, for not cutting me off. a nice day, sir. but i. -- bye-bye. host: michael brune. guest: thank you, john. it sounds like you are spending a lot of time on the road. because of state and federal mandates, policy has been put in place to address two things -- lowering air pollution, all different kinds -- compounds
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that affect locally as well as greenhouse gas emissions, and also, to make vehicles more efficient at the same time. there has been attempts to reformulate gasoline, to make it cleaner, but the biggest move that happened over the last decade or so federally has been to make our vehicle more efficient -- to go further on a gallon of gas. california, where the air quality is pretty poor, about 10 years ago, the state set policies to make our vehicles more efficient, and those policies were copied by, eventually, 19 other states across the u.s.. then, when obama became president, he made easy efficiency standards ubiquitous across the country. the country had one set of standards to take the average efficiency from 22 miles per gallon, up to 35 miles per
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gallon. a second set of standards have been formalized and finalized, which will increase efficiency up to 55, or almost 55 miles per gallon for an average vehicle. automakers ins detroit and elsewhere that are able to lower the energy cost or bysumers -- for consumers getting the same types of cars and trucks to go much much further. host: florida. republican caller. span.r: praise be to c- here in florida, we have a unique program that is combined with getting families to camp out one day a month in their backyard and incrementally get used to being off of the grid, and i would like to invite joe biden and ralph nader to come
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visit us. the citizens only utility company, and i would like those three people to come help me deal with our new mayor he you asked. his name is howard, and he won a moral way, because he bear false witness against his opponent. host: will move on to art. independent caller. .o ahead, sir all right, one last call for our. -- art. let's move on to john, brooklyn, new york, democratic caller. caller: good morning, c-span. thank you for taking my call. since we have had efficiency improvements in the united states the last couple of years,
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since we talked about, why is oil production increasing in the united states, and my second question is about buildings operating efficiency -- efficiently. are there training programs for kids coming out of high schools and colleges to maintain buildings to operate efficiently moving forward. thank you for taking my call. guest: thank you for calling in, and congratulations on your new mayor. programs for efficiency, and some have been extended by the administration, acceleratesory that progress -- employment in communities and gives people a leg up into the jobs market. in california, there is a small group called solar richmond which takes youth from urban
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, and helpse bay area them get a leg up on the solar economy. we have similar programs in the central valley and all across the country, either to help install solar panels on the roofs of each -- churches, buildings, and homes, or to make buildings more energy efficiency -- efficient. can you remind me of the first part of the question? host: i blanked. john, are you still with us? increasingwe are efficiency, why is oil production increasing? thank you. guest: that is part of the untold story. 22 billionalmost use barrels of oil every day, and
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now we are down to 19, and most estimates have that declining to below 15. and how do you reconcile those? we are becoming a major exporter of oil and gas, so here, in the u.s., we are bearing the pollution burden from fracking gas, and theal pipelines being constructed go through special places in the watersheds, and a lot of that oil is being exported to other countries. the keystone xl pipeline, if it is built, would go not to the united states, but through the united states, and most of that oil would be exported to other countries. so, we get the risk, as taxpayers and citizens of the united states, and often it is
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the oil industry or gas industry that reaps the profits. host: michael brune, where is the evidence that this will be exported? guest: go on an earnings call for any refinery based in the gulf, and they will state clearly that the majority of oil will be exported, and they say that because investors in these companies know they will command a higher price overseas. so, if the oil is exported as diesel products for latin america, they would get a much higher price than they would in the united states. so, you hear the refineries talking quite clearly and candidly that they expect an increased profit potential from exports down south. host: earlier this year, you laid out five essential presidential actions. the keystone xl pipeline was number one on the list. why? .uest: for two reasons
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one, it has become symbolic of the types of choices the administration needs to make. one of the things the president said in his climate speech at building thene, keystone xl pipeline is not in our country's interested it would expand or exacerbate the challenge of stab amazing -- stabilizing greenhouse gas emissions. aat is true for keystone and variety of other energy decisions the energy -- the country is making. keystone has become a high- profile is true -- issue and symbolically, it is important. is one of the dirtiest sources of oil on the planet. you cannot reduce greenhouse gas
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emissions, cut carbon pollution, and expand investment in the dirtiest sources of oil on the planet. so, we have to have a reconciliation of the president's policy. if we are serious about a stable climate, and you have to cut emissions, you cannot grow new sources of dirty oil. york magazine," -- "the keystone fight is a huge --
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make keystoneto the number 15? -- number one fight? guest: i read that article, and there are two faulty assumptions . first, the level of robin pollution. his assumption -- carbon pollution -- carbon pollution. that it willn is come no matter what, where that is transferred from the keystone pipeline, or if it goes by rail to other countries, or trucks -- for spec, however it comes. the assumption is the oil will come out no matter what, and that is a cynical projection because if we extract the oil from the tar sands that is economically recoverable, and similar amounts of oil from other oil fields, we had no
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chance, zero chance of stabilizing greenhouse gas emissions. scientists have agreed that if we want to keep global warming to a roughly manageable level, 3.6 degreesrming to fahrenheit, we have to keep two- thirds of our fossil fuels in the ground. a tall task. the second assumption that is not true in the article, is we only do one thing in the environmental movement, but we are focused on one issue, and i run the largest grass roots environmental organization in the country, and i know that is not true. you can look at our budget, which is publicly disclosed every year, and you can see that both at the sierra club and many arer organizations, we spending significant resources in other areas.
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the largest campaign in the history of the movement is focused on retiring dirty coal plants and expanding the use of clean energy. at the sierra club, we have more than 150 full-time staff doing exactly what jonathan said, working to secure strong rules workmit carbon, into state-by-state, utility by utility, and coal plant by coal plant, to make sure each individual boiler is retired on a thoughtful, smart, schedule, and replaced with energy, wind, and other sources. -- pleaseasktter the guest commenting millions of dollars his outfit contributed to natural gas drillers to cripple coal. contributedve not to natural gas drillers in any way. they are quite wealthy in their own right.
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they do not need contributions from the environmental industry. there have been partnerships between environmental groups in the natural gas industry, which is ill advised. we recognize that the natural is andustry -- natural gas fossil fuel, it causes significant air and water pollution. it is not a bridge fuel. it does not take us to a clean energy future. it distracts us from building a clean energy economy. what the sierra club believes is there is enormous potential in investing for solar, wind, and energy efficiency to meet our needs now and in the future, and increasingly, more utilities agree. we installed new power sources -- more than 2012, then oil, coal, gas and nuclear power combined. host: c is next. herkimer, new york, republican caller.
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thank you. we elect a president every four years, and the american people are asked what issues are most important to them, and the environment always comes in at the bottom at 4%. it is not that the american people do not want clean air and clean water. the american people are smart enough to know that no one knows less about the environment than environmentalists. if you people were not so destructive, you would be even more comical. highlight one of your more humorous comedy routines. least10 years ago -- at 10 years ago -- one of the upper midwestern states, there was an area where ranchers grazed their cattle. some environmentalist group sued
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because this area was the home for prairie dogs. a federal judge ruled in their favor, and when the cattle stopped grazing, the grass grew so tall that the entire area became uninhabitable and the prairie dogs left. my point is, most s are notntalist scientists, and judges are not always the smartest people in the room. thank you. guest: well, thank you for the love, charlie. , we are notlists just folks to get up early in the morning and get on television in suits and ties. we are your friends, your neighbors, and people that are in the republican party, the democratic party, able to live in cities, and people that lived in the country.
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all we have in common is basic values that regardless of what our job is, our sexual orientation, our religious belief, we believe in clean air, clean water, producing jobs in industries that are sustainable, that we have the potential to power our economy with energy that is clean, renewable, and save, and we think we can work with businesses to establish grow our economy, improve our quality of life and make air and water clean. i know there are controversy of issues some have taken, and controversy of things -- controversy oh -- controversy from things we have said, but i know there is common value it has most of america really does
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believe in basic environmental values. i would just say there's a lot more that brings us together then sets us apart. thank you for your comments. numbers, hereoll , findingnt from pew energy problem has declined as a public priority. venice beach. democratic caller. see, thank you. -- caller:. for the sierra club. we are all entitled to pressure, clean water. bioain comment is regarding mimicry and nanotechnology, cuttingally is the
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edge, and something we can learn from nature. obviously, favorable to nature, but we can utilize nature by studying the components of things like shapes andnd feathers and things that could actually have no net loss of everything is utilized to perfection by nature . therefore, the principles in nature can be applied to different types of engineering ,ursuits in building designs things like air conditioning that can be modified and structured on these natural occurring structures in nature, and applied to difficult science , therefore making it far more conducive to a healthy environment with no net loss. host: i will leave it there. mr. brune? guest: i do not have much to
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add, except for people that are not familiar with the term bio mimicry. there are lots of ways to interact with nature. some of us go on hikes were camped out every now and then, but there are a lot of scientists that want to understand in great detail the processes of nature -- how the ecosystems interact, and how different organisms interact to see what lessons we can learn that can be applied to a modern economy. how can we produce materials in ways that do not produce pollution? how do we find ways to minimize waste question mark in -- waste? in nature, there are no landfills, garbage dumps. nature operates with efficiency. bio mimicry involves understanding nature to apply the lessons to a modern world, it is a fascinating idea. int: let's go to tom
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illinois, a republican caller. talk to you to today. i am from illinois, and i live in flyover country thomas and i never hear that debate -- country, i never hear the debate -- i would like to know how many jets the guest flies in the the year. two years ago, i called in and they had a nasa scientist. him -- there are 5000 jets a day and each one uses diesel fuel. i have a 1500 acre farm, and i do not use that much diesel fuel a year. i asked the scientist, what affect do the jets have on the atironment, because they fly
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20,000, 30,000 feet, putting out carbon. plants.ctually food for so, i asked him, what does that do, and i said have you ever the upper air environment, and he said yes, on 9/11. i remember those days, four the, and no jets flew in air was clean. the other thing is, it if you have ever stood behind roads and it will damage near knock you off of your feet. what do you think a jet flying at 35,000 feet the size of a football field does to the turbulence of the atmosphere? nothing is ever brought up
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because of the people flying in those jets. host: all right. ?sther --mr. brune guest: you are right, we look at the sources of air pollution, there is relatively little attention paid to airlines, jets. but is therobably, fastest growing source of carbon pollution, and the fastest- growing attribute or to climate change around the world. most of the agreements that have been put into place -- international agreements -- they do not yet applied effectively to air traffic. you asked about my own travel, and how much i am flying. i am traveling too much, extensively, mostly in the u.s., to help establish policies that would address that. youi suspect that i -- that are trying to find some inconsistency there.
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in thisneed to do country is find ways to make our economy more efficient and effective so that people who need to travel, or be with family members or their business, can do so in ways that do not pollute. we want to offer incentives for airlines to be able to use fuel that do not contribute to a destabilized climate. we want to find a way to get people from place to place efficiency without causing negative side effects. brune, the epa is holding listening sessions around the country on the best way to reduce emissions from power plants. they have one kicking off this morning at epa headquarters in washington. what is the best way, in your opinion? guest: to reduce emissions from power plants? host: right. guest: a variety of sources.
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that is the good news. states can apply a variety. carbon from power plants is a significant cause of climate change, but it is the pollution carbon plants, air toxins like mercury and other the sierra club is sending out hundreds of volunteers to these listening sessions in dallas, philadelphia, san francisco, chicago, washington, dc. we are encouraging policymakers throughout the obama administration and epa to recognize that we have economic alternatives. linean take dirty coal off- and invest more in solar and wind. with renewable energy resources. host: c-span will be covering
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that. michael brune . a discussion about america's voting laws and the electoral system. we will be joined by a national security council director for the european affairs. you look at the impact surveillance programs and spine are having a diplomatic relations. washington journal is live here on c-span.
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>> putting you in the room at briefings and conferences, offering complete gavel to gavel coverage of the u.s. house as a public service of private industry. industry 34he cable years ago and funded by your local cable or satellite provider. you can watch us in hd. we are back. joining us from san francisco this morning to continue our conversation about renewable energy is joseph desmond. he is the senior vice president of marketing and governor -- government affairs for brightsource energy. , whato talk about ivanpah is this? guest: it is concentrating solar thermal power plant. most people think of the panels you see on rooftops. we are using a field of mirrors
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and they track this done -- the sun on two axes. it focuses the sunlight onto a tower. produced is sent through a turbine. host: where is this taking place? guest: just on the edge of california. 40 miles south of las vegas. it is an area that has fantastic son. -- sun. that is exactly where it is. it is located adjacent to a 36 hole golf course. it is across the highway from three casinos. it is right along highway 15. host: when did construction began and when will it be ready to go? the permittinged process back in 2006.
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the actual construction began in october 2010. we closed financing in the spring of 2011. we are now nearing completion. we installed the last of the mirrors about two weeks ago. we have achieved what we called first synchronization of the grid. those units will come online between now and the end of the year. host: what are you expecting? guest: we are expecting the project to consist of three towers. each tower has a long-term contract. years.20 or 25 the output is presold. host: given california's population, how much will
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california power be generated from this? guest: this is all going toward california. technically, the electrons will go where they need to go. all of that energy is provided to california. manyis just one of projects california has undertaken in the solar and wind and geothermal biomass-based. -- biomass base. the power plant will be the largest of its kind in the world. by the end of this year, in this category, concentrating solar almost 800e will be megawatts installed by the end of this year: online. online. host: who are your investors? source is at
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technology company. our investors include vantage point, many traditional venture capital investors. host: what about the taxpayer? guest: the taxpayer is providing a $1.6 billion loan guarantee for this project. host: this comes from the federal loan guarantee program indra.ive money to cyl how confident are you this will succeed and that taxpayers will see their investment succeed? a technology perspective, this is not the first project we have built. it is the first at its commercial scale. the loan guarantee was designed for that. to help facilitate the commercialization of innovative projects at utility scale. we had a research and development facility. three years ago, we built a solar steam facility for
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chevron. we have been demonstrating the technology many steps along the way. we funded about $2.5 billion of independent, third- party evaluation of the technology, of the project on behalf of the federal government and on behalf of taxpayers. with respect to how the loan gets paid back. there is a federal tax incentive. that immediately goes to reducing the loan. we reduce that by nearly 30%. the second is that those contracts -- it is very ylindra.t than cry with theated california utilities. they will buy the output of those power plants. if you book a hotel in the day you opened you guaranteed 100% occupancy for the next 25 years. because of your arrangement with the california
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government or the utilities? guest: the utilities and their credit worthiness. a lotso have to recognize of due diligence was done on the part of our project investors to make sure they're confident the technology will work. we have already begun demonstrating through the technical process known as ascension. we are bringing it online and are testing it and we will continue to finish the process by the end of the year. host: those california companies -- those utility companies -- mickey mouse commitments because of the standards set by the california legislature. how much total does this product cost? cost $2.3 project billion. host: most of the money coming from the taxpayer. why is that? these projects
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are large infrastructure project. they rely on borrowed money to match up against the equity, or the private capital, that is invested. the federal government is providing a loan guarantee in the event of default. it is the combination of the loan guarantee with the equity investment that is used to finance these projects. host: could it not stand on its own? guest: a project should be able to stand on its own on a going forward basis. these are innovative technologies. the size of these projects, the first of its kind. we have had demonstration projects, but this is what you would call commercialization. scaling up, being able to drive cost down -- as we drive forward, we are not looking for loan guarantees. we would point to the marketplace being able to say that they understand the technology am a we have de- risked some of the aspects of the project and that allows you to -- host: let's get our viewers
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involved. democratic caller in michigan. caller: good morning. i am calling from michigan. michigan legislators are making ordinances against wind power and solar power. they are making it hard for any any kind ofcreate self-sufficient power sources. any tax off of that because they don't have any legislation in order. fuel like gasoline and all those kind of taxes to create the infrastructures. but these infrastructures are not for the people. it is for the government. guest: i'm not sure exactly the question, but i can comment on the role of utilities.
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going back over 100 years, we had essentially regulated industry put forth because utilities were natural monopolies at the time. he couldn't provide the service more cost competitively through competition. you can go back to old photographs in the 1880's and see two sets of transmission lines are running down the highway. the industry is very regulated because it provides an important service and reliability is job number one. what a utility's obligation is is to provide energy at the most reasonable cost subject to maintaining environmental standards and stewardship. and balancing security. what we have in different states is that people have different views about what the social policy objective should be. how much diversity is needed than the system. how much comes from energy efficiency. the rate structure. by and large, utilities are a
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regulated business governed by a governor. california, independent color. caller: -- caller. area is partvanpah of the great basin. there is very little water in the desert here in the mojave. i have noticed that you therened the golf club along the back fence line. they have three or four wellheads where the well is under a concrete pad. by groundused subsidence. you remove so much water from you have thehat skeletal system of the aquifer collapse and the earth collapses into itself.
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that reduces the capacity of the aquifer forever. regardless of future flooding or raining or whatever, the aquifer cannot be recharged. is overion to you sir the life of your solar plant there in ivanpah valley, what is the likelihood you will have enough water for the steam? guest: excellent question. let's break it into two parts. it is a closed in system. we are recirculating the water. we are running it in a complete cycle. that is how the water operates in a closed loop. is that wepoint actually don't use traditional wet cooling. one of the innovative aspects of
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this technology is the use of air cooled condenser is. you consume 95% less water than traditional cooling methods used for thermal power plants. i mentioned that we are serving approximately 140,000 homes per year. the amount of water we will use each year is about 100 acre-feet . most people say, what is that? that is the same amount of water that 300 homes would use in one year. it is the same amount of water that two holes in the golf course x two is used to keep the grass green. it is a very efficient use of water. we are sensitive to that. the technology is innovative. we don't grace the land. we have developed technology that allows us to loosen the soil and vibrate a post into the ground to maintain the natural contours of the land.
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just by doing that and maintaining that natural landscape, we can avoid sensitive areas of habitat. impact of land- use in that area. we have the set of mountains just to the left of us. when the rain comes in the desert, it comes only a few times here, but it is a lot. our technology has been designed to withstand the floods. we have yet to see anything. thebenefit has been innovative technology to minimize the environmental footprint to take into account the issue you raised -- how important water is in the desert. host: is that what you chose this location? guest: that is part of the reason. there were several reasons we chose this location. it has great son. sunun. the intensity of the over the course of the year is
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excellent. you will produce more energy per square foot than an area with less intense sun. it also had an existing gas and transmission line. we consume a little bit of gas -- natural gas to the pipes warm to capture the early morning sunlight. it helps improve the overall performance. there were existing transmission lines. the two transmissions lines that ran through when all the way back to the hoover dam. we are able to deliver the power into the grid. the: the land is owned by bureau of land management. how is it that you are able to build on government owned land? guest: you submit an application to the government and in that you obtain a lease. there has been some recent efforts to look at auctioning.
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where leasing the land from the federal government and at the end of that lease, we are required to restore the land exactly the way it was. to that end, we have collected for tons of seed that sit in storage that came from the native grasslands and we will replant that at the very end. it is leased on federal land. the federal government leases land for oil and gas trilling, solar, wind. by comparison, there are 20 million acres in the mojave desert. we are on 3500 acres. , there aret to say maybe only 25 solar projects that have been licensed by washington. gas you talk about oil and exploration onshore. they process about 2000 leases per year. for 7 million acres. it is a significant difference.
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when you look at a solar plant like ours, would you see is the collection of the resources and that transformation and processing that to a product, electricity, that is delivered to the grid. at a natural gas power plant -- asen you look at a natural gl powerplant, you don't see the land being used for exploration, , andction, processing transportation. it is an efficient use of land provided you are identifying the appropriate land and habitat and you are taking the steps to protect this species. host: you said he will restore it back to the original look at the end of the lease. this i mean the installations go away? yes.: this is not -- this powerplant
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has a rated license of 30 years. the lease we have is 50 years. when i plant is reaching the end of its useful life, often times you are able to repower. you upgrade, you replace the turbine. you can get additional useful life. that is a question that will be asked at the end of 25-30 years. legally, we are obligated to restore that. we had to post a bond to make sure that happened. solar -- imagine you bought a theand went to pay for it gas was three for the life of the car. that is what you have here. you have high cop -- capital cost. but the electricity is free. those are the economics you look at. versusnd variable cost something that is capital cost only. host: corpus christi texas. republicans. caller: good morning, y'all.
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more on how many mirrors are there? , are thereur towers limits as to how much heat they can take? guest: great questions. let me walk you through how they operate. there are three towers. each tower is 459 feet tall. itther way of thinking about is that it is one meter taller than the great pyramid. we have a total of 173,500 mirrors. 133 andrs are roughly 173 megawatts in rating size.
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each of those mirrors is individually controlled. at any given point in time we don't need all the mirrors. we need enough mirrors to maintain just enough flux, reflected sunlight onto the top of that tower, to maintain the appropriate temperature and pressure. the temperature exceeds 1000 degrees fahrenheit. those are the conditions we create. having the tower technology allows you to use or achieve , highergher efficiency temperatures, higher pressures to use a more efficient turbine. that helps lower the cost of energy. in terms of the solar field. three fields. individually controlled. that is that we get that done. host: do you think this is the future of solar power? that this replaces the traditional panels? guest: excellent question.
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i would say no. not at all. if you think about energy policy, it is always all of the above. we need a mix and a diversity of resources. orther it is fossil fuel nuclear. to make use of the investments that we have. different solar projects have different attributes. plant is variable. you can predict with fairly accurate numbers over the course of a month. in the case of a solar plant, we are able to marry the technology up with thermal storage. you can capture the heat of the sun and use it to produce electricity when the sun goes down. it is actually going to be a combination of those two. the grid needs resources that are flexible and dispatchable. you can create that with thermal storage. we think of this as solar steam and we can use that and other
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applications. reducing the carbon intensity of coal plants. as enhanced oil recovery, as we have artie demonstrated in california. the future of clean energy is a solar steam. host: a tweet from one of our viewers. is your hardware friendly to replacement and upgrade? guest: we built on-site. think of an automotive plant. the 173,000 of the rate of about one per minute. this is steel and glass. it is standard mirrors that you would expect to use. they require cleaning less frequently than we had
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anticipated. when i gave the figure earlier to the caller who asked how much water, that hundred acre-feet includes cleaning the facilities. the operation and maintenance in a thermal plant is well known and well understood. comparing the number of workers during construction, we had at the peak when 100 craft workers 2100 craft workers. to operate that plant it require about 90 people to operate all three units for the next five years. -- 25 years. -- : another tweet guest: there is nothing going into the atmosphere. you don't keep the air. -- heat the air.
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dense.not when you heat the air, we are pointing at the tower. the raised average at the tower. there is no emissions other than the very small amount used for the natural gas. but we are recycling the water. we're minimizing the footprint. that is the reason that you look at renewable investment. host: what about the species in the area? there was concern over a desert tortoise. guest: there were concerns. we selected this land in part because it was indicated that it was a class three desert tortoise habitat -- the least sensitive habitat. the initial surveys indicated that very few tortoises would be on the site. we found construction, we found more. they were not exactly sure why. the drought year could have contributed. nonetheless, people legitimately have concerns and we have taken
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great steps to ensure their protection. i will give you an indication. we have desert fencing that prevents the tortoises from burrowing back end. at one time, we had 150 biologists and they would go through the system -- walk through the solar field. any tortoise that was identified was moved to a nursery where it was tested for and looked for medical care to make sure it did not have respiratory disease. there are only two times per year when you can move tortoises. we found 140 in total. while there in those nurseries and we are waiting the next window, we had 55 to been out tortoises born in captivity. we also have a head start program. the head start program provides shelter because the survival rate of the tortoise, the desert tortoise, in the wild is about 2%. 98% don't make it to adulthood. they're part of the food chain.
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in this case, of the survival of the head start program because the survivalected, rate is 98%. it is another way of saying that as a result of the project, we will return more adult does her tortoises into the ivanpah valley than if there had been no project at all. i know some people have a hard time sometimes understanding that, but that is what is happening. additionally, we are tracking for hundred of the tortoises -- of the tortoises. the concerns were legitimate. imposed onnditions the project. everyone has worked for hard. there has been no significant differences between those adults that were moved and the others in the control population. it has been a tremendous
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success. host: an e-mail from greg in south dakota. guest: off the top of my head, i can tell you that the average annual consumption in california is 750 kilowatt hours per year. taking into account big-screen tvs, stereos, lights, and cooking. we have roughly -- we serve 140,000 homes. when helio stat serves one home. that is another way of thinking about it. is anms of solar, there installation going in every day in the country. on the concentrated solar side, roughly given the size of our heliostat, it is one for home.
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you can do the math that way. host: the project is called ivanpah. it is the largest solar project in the world. billion. washington journal continues. host: we are back talking about renewable energy here on "the washington journal." we are focusing now on wind energy. ruining us from denver is elizabeth salerno, the chief economist for the american wind energy association. let's begin with what is your organization and who belongs to it? guest: hi, thanks for having me. american wind energy association is the national trade group for the entire united states wind industry. we represent all sectors of the wind industry which includes project developers, but also the
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supply chain, all of the companies that supply components for our wind turbines, the utilities, the transportation units that move the components, service companies that provide operations and maintenance. we have about 1300 different businesses involved in our association. host: you had a recent report that said the wind industry experienced a painful slowdown at the beginning of 2013. what happened? saw a lot ofdustry uncertainty during 2012 that caused us to halt some of our investments, slowdown some of our developments because of that uncertainty, making it difficult for our businesses to justify future investment in new wind project or innovation or research and development. the consequence of the uncertainty around our policy, the production tax credit and whether or not it was going to be in place in 2013 and beyond, that really cause to that uncertainty and the consequences
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of that word that we saw a limited installation during the first six months of 2016 2013. only one turbine was installed and that was a consequence of the uncertainty we felt during 2012. the way to break free from that cycle is to put in place clear and consistent policy that lets us make those long-term business investments for our industry and innovation in projects. we are lucky that the production tax credit was extended in early 2013 and we are seeing the impact and the benefits of that extension today with electric utilities, producing significant amount of wind power because of its affordability. we are starting to see turbine orders come through to the wind industry. ramping up our wind manufacturing. we are seeing job start the backup. host: let's show our viewers, .rom your website, the numbers
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what happened in 2012 by quarter. wind installation measured by megawatts. then take a look at the first quarter of one b 13 -- 2013. zero megawatts in the second quarter of 2013. now up to 68.3 megawatts in the third quarter. what you expect for the fourth quarter? guest: as the industry response to the extension of the tax credit, we ramp up development and pick our development back up and see manufacturing get back to work them a we do expect to see a significant amount of activity in the fourth quarter in terms of new construction of new projects responding to the ptc. into 2014 andinue beyond. the challenger continues to be
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-- the lead time for these capital-intensive wind projects can be 18 or 24 months. in order to make the investments, we need clarity and consistency over a much longer. of time -- period of time to make those investments. if uncertainty continues to rule today, we will continue to see the impact like we saw in 2013 in the host: first six months. host:what states are contributing the most and wind power? -- in wind power? 38t: 38 states --guest: states have wind installations at this moment. the number one status texas. for more wind energy than any ther state in them -- at moment. followed by iowa and california. iowa, 20% of the electricity produced in the state of iowa, as well as south dakota, is coming from wind energy today.
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in texas we are approaching 10% of the electricity humming from wind energy. one of the more exciting areas for development in the wind industry are some of the areas that have not been historically our growth regions. laces like michigan and ohio. with the new technology of wind turbines have been able to enter those regions and scale up wind power to a very affordable rate. we have seen some of the utilities in michigan actually leastind power as their cost resources they can build today. it is more affordable than any other form of electricity generation that they have in the state of michigan. this is also happening in the region of the southeast, which maybe we all don't think of as an area for wind development traditionally. the cousin the low affordable rate and energy is providing today, utilities in the counties are bringing in the affordable wind power from places like kansas and oklahoma and texas,
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citing the fact that it is the best choice for their consumers right now. host: would you say to critics industryhat the wind is too dependent on these tax credits? interesting an point that we do here often. indon't have energy policy this country. our de facto energy policy is the tax cut. it is using tax policy to domestic, clean, affordable energy in this country. we have been doing it for about 100 years. we provide tax relief to domestic energy resources in order to make sure we have domestic and affordable electricity and other forms of energy. is production tax credit just the form that tax relief takes for the wind industry. there are different forms depending on what energy source you are am a but for the
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production tax credit it has been such a successful policy over the last several years, where it has leveraged over $100 billion in private investment in wind projects. that has led to hold the manufacturing sectors that we did not have 5-10 years ago in this country. the components of a wind turbine are heavy, sophisticated, large pieces of hardware. it makes the most sense to make these products close to home for transportation and logistics which can be very expensive. by having a market that is growing with is a part of the production tax credit, it has led us to about 550 manufacturing facilities around the country, around the u.s., that are supplying the wind industry with our turbines. getting 70% of their content from u.s. sources. those are all of the impacts and benefits that have come from the
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production tax credit in recent years and i think one of the things that we don't realize about the tax credit is that while it does spur development of wind energy around the country in terms of new projects, that tax relief is ultimately passed through to you and i when we pay our electricity bill. the tax relief shows up on our electricity bills because we are able to negotiate lower contract prices with the electric utilities. at the end of the day, you and i actually see that cost savings on the bill. host: we are talking about the u.s. wind industry with elizabeth salerno of the american wind energy association. we will take her calls. democrats, (202) 585-3880. .epublicans, (202) 585-3881 independents and all others, (202) 585-3882. before we get to our viewers, it what about jobs? how many jobs as a created, the
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wind industry? guest: that is a great question. it is a critical part of our industry. the jobs we need are many and they are diverse in the sectors where we need trained, skilled individuals to be part of this industry. at the end of one he 12, we had 2012, wedividuals -- had 80,000 individuals. civil engineering, manufacturing many of the jobs are in the manufacturing sector. at those 550 facilities we mentioned. we have a diverse set of employment in our industry that needs a different set of skills. one of the most unique jobs in our industry is what we call a wind technician. these are individuals must be
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highly skilled in mechanical and electrical engineering and that maintain the turbines after they are operating. fielda very interesting because these are local individuals who have a permanent job where the project is in auroral regions of our country, getting paid a pretty great salary. host: what is the salary? guest: it depends where you are located. it can be up over six figures for a senior technician. if you're managing the team of people who are operating the turbines. it leads back to the unique set of skills that they lead -- need to maintain these turbines. host: on twitter -- how can we store wind energy produced when the wind isn't blowing? a great question and one that comes up often. we are lucky that in the u.s.,
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we operate our power grid as an entire system. all of the resources, the natural gas plants, coal plants, renewable energy facilities are all together on a system. wherever the demand is, the electricity can flow. make sure wetem to can move the power when the wind is blowing, to make sure we have the transmission to move the power is the most affordable and effective way to use the wind energy when it is blowing. if the wind is not so strong on certain parts of the day, we have a very robust system that allows flexible units, to ramp . ramp up and down and make sure we balance supply and demand. the system as a whole is the best way to store and make sure we utilize renewable resources when they are producing. host: independent color. michigan. caller: good morning.

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